Difference between Arts and Fine Arts

Key difference: The difference between the two terms is that ‘Arts’ is an expression that is used to define human creativity and skill-set through various activities and its forms, whereas ‘Fine Arts’ is a type of art that includes singing, acting, dancing, music or playing an instrument, sculpting, etc.

Arts and Fine Arts are two words that widely confused with and used as synonyms of each other. The main difference between the two terms is that anything that is appealing and/or thought provoking can be classified as art, while ‘fine arts’ is more about an aesthetics appeal. ‘Fine arts’ is considered a type of art, but ‘arts’ is a broad term that embraces many other creative and artistic activities. ‘Art’ is that one fine art that requires developed skills, techniques and a creative mind.

Art can be defined as a wide range of human activities that require artistic abilities, wide imagination and a unique perspective. Furthermore, it is defined as ‘skill acquired by experience, study, or observation’ such as the art of communication or cooking. Any person that has the ability, skill and vision can be called an artist. Though, in the ancient times, art, a skill or mastery, was considered similar to other crafts or sciences. It only had aesthetic purposes and no functional purposes. 

Art requires a person to be creative, imaginative and expressive through its visual piece of art. The said art is expected to stimulate people’s thoughts and display the technical skills of an artist. The term art is also considered as the study, process and the product of the creative skill. Though, over time, the definition of art has certainly changed from being ‘a talent of human mind’ to an ‘idea or notion of imagination and creativity coming from the human mind’. It is a visual form of expression that is primarily appreciated for its beauty or emotional power through paintings, sculpting, printmaking and photography graffiti, cooking, designing, sewing, acting, dancing and almost everything.

Arts are further classified as:

  • Fine arts
  • Performing arts
  • Visual arts
  • Video arts
  • Designing, etc

Thus, from the above classification, ‘fine arts’ is considered to a type of art. It too requires a unique skill-sets and a creative mind. This too is primarily developed for visual and aesthetic appeal. Though, fine art is created for intellectual purposes and meant to be judged on its beauty and meaningfulness. It is the refined opinion and perception of good taste in art that differentiates ‘fine art’ from other popular form of art and entertainment.

Comparison between Arts and Fine Arts:



Fine Arts


It is defined as the quality, expression, production and creation of a work of beauty and other significance.


It is defined as a visual art that is created mainly for aesthetic purposes and to be judged for its beauty and meaning.


It includes all types of art forms:

  • Fine arts
  • Performing arts
  • Visual arts
  • Video arts
  • Designing

It is a type of art.


It often excludes architecture.

It includes architecture.


It can be judged and appreciated according to its art form.

It is meant to be judged for its beauty and meaningfulness.

Image Courtesy: ruthcatchen.wordpress.com, suvasam.org

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